The sand wedge has the most distinctive design of any club in
the bag. It is well suited for sand because the design prevents the clubhead
from digging too deeply. The flange along the sole of the club extends lower
than the leading edge allowing the club to slide easily through the sand
rather than digging deeply into it. This angle from the leading edge to the
back of the sole is called bounce. You want to make sure that you have the
correct degree of bounce for the type of sand that you play in. If you do not
have a sand wedge consult your local P.G.A. Professional for the best sand
wedge for your game.
Setting up for a bunker shot.
Align your feet, hips, and shoulders to the left of the target. This will
allow you to make an out to in swing. Aim the clubface to the right of the
target. This increases the loft of the clubface so you can hit a high and soft
shot. It also increases the amount of bounce on the sole of the clubhead.
The swing on the green side bunker shot. The clubhead speed
comes mainly from your arms and hands. Break your wrists early on the
backswing and allow them to cock all the way. This is a very handsy shot with
very little movement in your hips and legs. The forward swing is dominated by
the right hand and from impact into the follow through it is very similar to
throwing a ball.
How much sand do I take? The amount of sand to take depends
on how much spin you want to put on the ball. For a normal green side bunker
shot aim about two inches behind the ball. When you want the ball to run after
it hits the green aim for a spot about three inches behind the ball. The ball
then comes out on a thick cushion of sand with hardly any backspin. When you
want to hit the ball high and make it stop quickly aim about one inch behind
the ball. The feeling on all of these types of shots is that you are splashing
the ball out of the sand. Apply these techniques and master the sand.